Thursday, March 8, 2018

The last 2 years

Two years ago today, I instagram'd the moment I walked into my first retrenchment (I didn't know at the time)

Last year today after being told I did an amazing job, I was asked to leave for not being a cultural fit.
Hijab wearing muslim working for company who predominantly sold hard liquor, yeah I figured
But I took the job because I had no other means of income.

Its not lost on me, but I can't tell you what retrenchments does to your psyche, your confidence, your ability to say with certainty. I KNOW HOW TO DO MY JOB

Between friends who gave generously of their time:

  • my lawyer friend who helped me negotiate a package, 
  • my social media friend who gave me some part time work to tide me over, to 
  • the friend who gave me a home so I wouldn't have to worry about paying rent. 
  • To the friend and her family who opened their home and fed me 
  • all of you who helped me and helped me maintain a semblance of dignity. for those friends who made me cry and reminded me that I have a tribe when I felt alone and isolated.

I am blessed that every time a door closed someone wedged it open even just slightly.
 I count my blessings everyday that I know have permanent employment. That I have am amazing group of people who didn't abandon me when life got tough, when the shit got real. I am not worthy of such friends.

I still battle with the feeling that I will never be safe again, or feel secured but I know this much.

Alhamdullilah wa Kafa - Thank God in every circumstance and Barakallahu Wafik to every one of you who saved me over and over again.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

shaking old memories lose

Last week, the ghadat opened a memory box that I had almost forgotten. While its made me pretty sad, I can't help and marvel at how far I have come.

The memory box was a little sketchy, in that it plays bits and pieces that overlap and blur and still cut like knives.

So poor.

When I tell people that I grew up poor and still have that mentality, I don't think they understood. Not that I ever explained it.

But after my dad has his toe amputated for gangrene. we didn't have much money. I remember exchanging cool drink bottles for cash for veggies to cook.

So poor, that when I was in agony because of teeth issues, the thing I remember was it was cheaper to extract than fix (fix meant multiple visits - that we couldn't afford.)

So poor that I cleaned my cousins house for money (she was a year younger than me)

look at me, Ms Digital Marketer with her own car, and poor person metality and look at how far you've come.

I never want to forget again.

I remain under a dark cloud, and the melancholy remains.

Friday, February 9, 2018

Gadat, Memories and Wishes

Last night was a tough, beautiful night.

I am attending ISR2018 International Spiritual Retreat in Macassar Cape Town hosted by the Mahabbah Foundation.
And last night marked the start of the retreat itself. And as per tradition, we have a Mass Ratibul Hadad locally known as a Gadat,which was so beautifully heartchingly recited.

I come from Johannesburg, and much to peoples surprise here in Cape Town. I grew up with it, literally, my father had his own Jamaah and there isn't a memory of mine, where gadat didn't feature.

Sundays and Thursdays were almost always for gadats, (which when all you wanted to do, was watch some TV and chill) but we did it.

The recitation last night was like a kick in the gut. It created such a sense of longing of my father and my mother who have passed away. Using the same lagoo (melody) I closed my eyes and pictured my father and uncles sitting in the lounge facing the congregation and leading us while we jikr'd with rhythm.

My childhood is pierced with these verses, to see My dad leading, my beautiful mother, Aunty Goula, and Uncle Manna and Uncle Ismail (Pa) and the laughter and loud recitation from the men and women of my family.

How I LONGED to open my eyes and see him there, one leg folded with his suede jacket and grey Kufiya. I sobbed and felt fresh despair, that I would never see my parents again.  I ached and wished I was 16 again, when they were all still with us. I made dua for their Akhira but all I wanted was to be transported back, to see them all one more time.

The gadat and the duas and the memories it evoked; leave me feeling a little tender today.